“Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” - Nora Ephron
I didn’t write this yesterday because it took me a day to process it all. Suffice it to say that there’s a lot going on personally right now and hearing that one of my writing heroes had passed didn’t make things easier.
And, to be truthful, from what I understand she wasn’t crazy about people making a fuss over her, so she would have most likely hated this.
Nora Ephron was the writing and creative equivalent to me of what Oprah Winfrey is to everyone else. I loved everything about this whip smart creative genius. She was an author, screenwriter, director, from her screenplays to her famous books to her outspoken wit and wisdom and everything in between. She was famous for giving us some of the greatest moments in movie history, from When Harry Met Sally to directing heartfelt movies such as Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail and Julie and Julia.
I loved that her strong, female characters were smart, sexy and independent women. Even though the girl got the guy in the end, you always respected how she got there. Nora Ephron told the truth about the complexities of the female condition and spirit. She may have had the salt of a sailor, but Nora was a gal’s gal.
Her books are some of my favorite pieces of literature ever. I Feel Bad About My Neck is one of my favorite books of all time, and if you’ve not read Wallflower At The Orgy or Crazy Salad, I respectfully request that you pick them up immediately. She’ll make you laugh, cry and think. Which is something she herself said books did for her.
I almost met her a year ago at the Huffington Post Game Changers awards. When I saw her standing in the crowd I was too awestruck to even approach her. She was laughing and smiling, speaking to Jan Wenner of Rolling Stone and Grace Hightower. I stood in awe of my proximity to one of the women who shaped the way that I write, frozen to the spot trying to translate years of admiration into a simple greeting. I’m sad to say I never took the chance. I regret that.
I’d like to honor Nora’s legacy, style, innate sex appeal and incredible wit about what it’s really like to be a woman. With When Harry Met Sally cranked up behind me, I’d like to thank her for crafting stories that make us think and laugh at the truth, that it kind of kicks ass to be a girl.
Thank you, Nora. Thank you for everything. I’d always wanted to emulate your strength, sense of whimsy and incredible wit. You always seemed to have such FUN with life…
In other words, ever since I was aware of you, I always said, “I’ll have what she’s having.”